Don't forget the sequel, Have a Nice Day!

Winner of the NAMI-NYC Metro 2007 Ken Book Award
For an outstanding literary contribution to a better understanding of mental illness

A Kirkus Reviews Best YA Book of 2007

A 2008 Quick Picks for Reluctant Young Adult Readers

An IRA Young Adult Choice 2009

2009 Texas TAYSHAS High School Reading List

I completely fell in love with Anna Bloom’s voice – it’s wry, romantic, and so, so true.” --Gabrielle Zevin, author of ELSEWHERE

Get Well Soon by Julie Halpern
from Feiwel and Friends, an imprint of Macmillan

Available in hardcover, paperback, and audiobook

From the book flap:

Anna Bloom is depressed—so depressed that her parents have committed her to a mental hospital with a bunch of other messed-up teens. Here she meets a roommate with a secret (and a plastic baby), a doctor who focuses way too much on her weight, and a cute, shy boy who just might like her.

But wait! Being trapped in a loony bin isn’t supposed to be about making friends, losing weight, and having a crush, is it?

In her fiction debut, Julie Halpern finds humor in the unlikeliest of places, and presents a character whose voice—and heart—will resonate with all of us who have ever felt just a little bit crazy.


"Debut author Halpern drew from her own teen experiences with depression, and Anne’s voice, filled with spot-on musings, sarcasm, slang, and swearing, is uproariously funny and authentic... Many teens will connect with the vague anxiety that lands Anna in treatment as well as her subtle, realistic sense that her life is her own to value and shape." -Booklist

"This story is engaging, the characters sound real, the writing is refreshing and natural, and the descriptions of the situations
are hilarious!" -

"In funny, easygoing prose, 16-year-old Anna writes letters while spending three difficult, involuntary weeks in a mental institution... This is an appealingly comic cousin of Carolyn Mackler’s The Earth, My Butt, and Other Big Round Things (2003)." -Kirkus Reviews

"Readers will cheer for Anna as she gains confidence in herself, dares to rebel a little, and gets well as she goes back to her life." -VOYA

1. What inspired you to write Get Well Soon?

            GWS is loosely based on my hospitalization for depression in high school.  There were so many strange but true things that happened; I always thought it would make a great book.  I began writing versions of GWS right during high school.  I think I needed fifteen years away from the hospital to finally get the story out.  When I started the novel version of GWS (see the Zines link for the zine version), the story was about ninety percent non-fiction.  In its final form, GWS is about equal parts fiction and non-fiction.

 2. So are you Anna?

             Sort of.  She’s me on a really funny day.  My self-esteem revelation took a lot longer to happen in real life.  Not all of the things that happened to Anna in the book happened to me.  She definitely looks like I did in high school, though.

 3. Were you a huge Ramones fan in high school?

            Sorry to say, no.  I liked them, but I was a depressed teenager during The Grunge Era (a good time to be depressed), so I was listening to lots of Soundgarden and Pearl Jam.  That seemed dated, so I picked another genre of music that I liked that has stood the test of time.

 4. Are all of the characters in GWS real?

            They are very fictionalized versions of mostly real people.  ALL of them.  Yes, even the satanic weirdos.  I couldn’t make that up.  Justin is a combination of people.  My mom, dad, and sister are not like my family.  That would have upset my mom too much, and I would have felt guilty.

 5. Did you really have a loony bin romance?

  I'm not going to answer that yet. For now, let's say I really like the way I wrote the romance in the book.

Have more questions? Email me @

Copyright 2015 Julie Halpern